NARCO-POLITIK: Deep State Vows Payback After Trump Disrupts Millions In Illegal Drug Trafficking Cash & Kickbacks from Syria

Source – truepundit.com

“…Federal sources paint a dark picture here, alleging crooked politicians and their benefactors are fuming. For years, it is alleged, deep state players have been raking in millions in illicit profits through the manufacturing and distribution of narcotics in Syria. But that profitable network could stop producing its riches for U.S. players if the cease-fire Trump negotiated continues and if Trump’s plan to remove U.S. personnel from Syria commences…“There’s panic,” one source said. “There are a lot of connected people making a lot of money through their contacts in Syria and that is going to dry up fast”

Deep State Vows PAYBACK After Trump Disrupts Millions In Illegal Drug Trafficking Cash & Kickbacks from Syria

High-placed federal law enforcement sources dropped a bombshell, claiming the renewed push to impeach the president is rooted, in part, in President Trump’s move to pull the United States out of the conflict in Syria — and stop untold millions in dirty cash from flowing into the deep state’s pockets.

“This isn’t about the Kurds, it’s about the cash,” one FBI source said.

And that cash is no chump change; it’s millions and millions of dollars flowing into the coffers of crooked politicians and deep-state pockets worldwide.

Federal sources paint a dark picture here, alleging crooked politicians and their benefactors are fuming. For years, it is alleged, deep state players have been raking in millions in illicit profits through the manufacturing and distribution of narcotics in Syria.

But that profitable network could stop producing its riches for U.S. players if the cease-fire Trump negotiated continues and if Trump’s plan to remove U.S. personnel from Syria commences.

Back here in the U.S., Trump faces a new and angrier wave of angst from DC players and politicians who have launched an even more-rabid push to remove him from the White House.

“There’s panic,” one source said. “There are a lot of connected people making a lot of money through their contacts in Syria and that is going to dry up fast.”

The byproducts of such anxiety: Crooked U.S. politicians pushing fabricated allegations against Trump to impeach, ISIS prisoners being released by frustrated deep-state players as payback, and even an emergency Middle East road trip by speaker Nancy Pelosi and senior members of Congress to Jordan, which also happens to be a major trafficking route for Syrian drug distribution to Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, and Iraq — some of the largest markets in the world for Syria’s meth pills.

Coincidence?

Trump has sabotaged a golden goose for the deep state, knowingly or not.

With the deep state dogging Trump with faux scandals in an attempt to remove him from the White House at every turn, you have to wonder if Trump’s foreign policy in Syria is targeting the millions of dollars that politicians and their deep-state connections are lining their pockets with, in the U.S. and other countries too.

The network, the money and the amount of illegal narcotics coming out of Syria are massive. Syria is supplying the entire Middle East with a very potent pill form of meth called Captagon. Syria’s Captagon is being trafficked through Europe and Africa. But Syria is also producing the ingredient to make other forms of meth worldwide, another Syrian product line being trafficked with huge profits even here in the United States.

Also, ISIS fighters are not only using this drug but their bosses are profiting from its distribution and using the proceeds to expand the global footprint of the terror conglomerate. That’s another wrinkle in this sorted, secret story.

The FBI and DEA have shared frustrations about fighting factions in the State Department to clamp down on millions of pills being manufactured in Syrian labs. Efforts to track and stop the worldwide distribution have resulted in a tug of war inside D.C. In June, the FBI tipped off Greek authorities about a Captagon shipment the U.S. Feds tracked out of the port of Latakia, Syria. The Greeks intercepted a shipment of lumber shrouding 33 million Captagon pills with a street value of $700 million.

\“That’s one shipment worth $600 to $700 million,” one federal source said. “This is a multi-billion dollar operation.”

And Trump just shut it down for many U.S. players. Again, perhaps as a way to stick it to the same folks who are trying to take him down.
Regardless, we are getting a glimpse into a money war behind the political war unfolding in D.C.

In December, a Syrian freighter en route from Latakia to Libya was intercepted near Crete with 3 million fenethylline pills worth $113 million. Syrian-made Captagon pills, known locally as Abu Hilalain — aka the father of two moons because each pill bears a logo of two crested moons — were impounded in France in 2017.

In 2016, the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) flagged concerns after Syria’s import of pseudoephedrine, a legally traded nasal decongestant that can be used to make highly addictive and powerful methamphetamine, though not Captagon, skyrocketed.

Tablets destined for Gulf countries are regularly seized in Lebanon — once from a Saudi prince — sometimes having been moved across the Syrian border. In Jordan, 47 million Captagon pills were reportedly confiscated in 2018, according to Jordan’s Public Security Directorate. And the Maryland-based National Center for Biotechnology Information now describes Syria as the “premier producer and exporter of counterfeit forms of Captagon.”

The drug, which gives a faster high than traditional amphetamine, has for years been a favorite among ISIS fighters. But its export from the country, through ports like Latakia that are controlled by the Bashar Assad government, suggests that the Syrian regime might now be turning to fenethylline sales internationally to bolster its treasury. At the very least, suggest experts, it might be allowing corrupt officials to carry out trade in the illegal substance to keep them loyal.

“It is plausible to think that with this amount of money involved, corruption and rent-seeking is a widespread practice,” says Maziyar Ghiabi, a lecturer at Oxford University and expert on Middle East drug politics. “And with shrinking sources of revenue, all the more logical.”

Captagon, Biocapton and Fitton were the brand names for drugs whose main active ingredient is fenethylline, which was legal in the U.S. until 1981, when its addictive properties saw it categorized as a Schedule 1 drug alongside heroin and cocaine. When legal in the 1960s and ’70s, it was used to calm hyperactive children and for patients suffering from narcolepsy and depression. By 1986, it was banned in most countries. Yet as with most narcotics, the ban only drove production underground, with southeastern Europe emerging as the manufacturing hub. Faced with increasing international pressure, production shifted to the Middle East after 2011. Until then, Syria had no history as a manufacturer or exporter of the drug — unlike Afghanistan, another nation at war that has been a poppy exporter for decades.

While the extent of the Syrian regime’s direct role in the export of the drug is hard to determine, a combination of the war, crippling international sanctions and the destruction of much of its regular economy have forced the government to look for new ways to make money. Werner Sipp, the INCB president, said in 2016 that “very high amounts of pseudoephedrine and other precursors ordered by Syria” had subsequently disappeared. He warned that narcotics from those ingredients might be manufactured and produced for exporting.” The INCB asked Syria for an explanation but hasn’t received one yet.

There’s a reason why fenethylline is Syria’s export of choice. It’s one of the most sought-after narcotics in the Middle East. In Saudi Arabia, the pill, which contains caffeine and quinine, a painkiller, is more popular than cocaine, weed, heroin or ecstasy. Captagon is also becoming increasingly popular in the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and North Africa. While a batch of 200 sells for about $70 in Lebanon, in wealthy Gulf states a single pill can fetch between $10 and $20. READ MORE:

This story is developing – Thomas Pain

Related…

Syria’s Next Big Export: Illegal Pills – By Stephen Starr

Greek authorities confiscated Captagon amphetamine pills after dismantling a criminal ring near Elefsina, southwest of Athens, Greece.
Source Michalis Karagiannis/REUTERS

Why you should care
Containers of banned fenethylline from Syria are popping up in the Mediterranean and Middle East as a battered regime seeks cash.

Greek narcotics officers were acting on a regular tip from the FBI to search a ship at Athens’ Piraeus port. The June raid led authorities to containers filled with 33 million pills of the banned psychostimulant fenethylline, commonly known as Captagon. Hidden inside pallets of lumber, the $660 million haul amounts to the biggest confiscation of the pill ever recorded. And where was the lumber loaded? Latakia, Syria.
The value of the recovered stash was worth more than all of Syria’s 2017 exports put together. This was the latest — and largest — piece of evidence pointing to the emergence of the war-torn nation becoming a major new exporter of narcotics, particularly fenethylline. In December, a Syrian freighter en route from Latakia to Libya was intercepted near Crete with 3 million fenethylline pills worth $113 million. Syrian-made Captagon pills, known locally as Abu Hilalain — aka the father of two moons because each pill bears a logo of two crested moons — were impounded in France in 2017.
In 2016, the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) flagged concerns after Syria’s import of pseudoephedrine, a legally traded nasal decongestant that can be used to make highly addictive and powerful methamphetamine, though not Captagon, skyrocketed. Tablets destined for Gulf countries are regularly seized in Lebanon — once from a Saudi prince — sometimes having been moved across the Syrian border. In Jordan, 47 million Captagon pills were reportedly confiscated in 2018, according to Jordan’s Public Security Directorate. And the Maryland-based National Center for Biotechnology Information now describes Syria as the “premier producer and exporter of counterfeit forms of Captagon.”
With this amount of money involved, corruption and rent-seeking is a widespread practice.
Maziyar Ghiabi, Oxford University
The drug, which gives a faster high than traditional amphetamine, has for years been a favorite among ISIS fighters. But its export from the country, through ports like Latakia that are controlled by the Bashar Assad government, suggests that the Syrian regime might now be turning to fenethylline sales internationally to bolster its treasury. At the very least, suggest experts, it might be allowing corrupt officials to carry out trade in the illegal substance to keep them loyal.
“It is plausible to think that with this amount of money involved, corruption and rent-seeking is a widespread practice,” says Maziyar Ghiabi, a lecturer at Oxford University and expert on Middle East drug politics. “And with shrinking sources of [government] revenue, all the more logical.”

Countries where Syria has exported the banned psychostimulant fenethylline.
Source Composite Sean Culligan/OZY, Image Shutterstock
Captagon, Biocapton and Fitton were the brand names for drugs whose main active ingredient is fenethylline, which was legal in the U.S. until 1981, when its addictive properties saw it categorized as a Schedule 1 drug alongside heroin and cocaine. When legal in the 1960s and ’70s, it was used to calm hyperactive children and for patients suffering from narcolepsy and depression. By 1986, it was banned in most countries. Yet as with most narcotics, the ban only drove production underground, with southeastern Europe emerging as the manufacturing hub. Faced with increasing international pressure, production shifted to the Middle East after 2011. Until then, Syria had no history as a manufacturer or exporter of the drug — unlike Afghanistan, another nation at war that has been a poppy exporter for decades.
While the extent of the Syrian regime’s direct role in the export of the drug is hard to determine, a combination of the war, crippling international sanctions and the destruction of much of its regular economy have forced the government to look for new ways to make money. Werner Sipp, the INCB president, said in 2016 that “very high amounts of pseudoephedrine and other precursors ordered by Syria” had subsequently disappeared. He warned that narcotics from those ingredients might be manufactured and produced for exporting.” The INCB asked Syria for an explanation but hasn’t received one yet.

Before the 2011 uprising, Syria’s robust pharmaceutical industry meant that almost all medicinal drugs consumed in Syria were produced in-country. Despite the war, Syria still maintains significant pharma infrastructure capable of producing vast quantities of legal medicines, and therefore illegal drugs such as Captagon. In 2017, the country’s health minister Nizar Yazayi told a pharmaceutical conference in Damascus that 40 of Syria’s 62 drug plants were still safe. State media in Syria also occasionally reports forces capturing Captagon pills worth millions on the international market from rebels. But the government hasn’t made clear what it does with all those pills.
There’s a reason why fenethylline is Syria’s export of choice. It’s one of the most sought-after narcotics in the Middle East. In Saudi Arabia, the pill, which contains caffeine and quinine, a painkiller, is more popular than cocaine, weed, heroin or ecstasy. According to a 2016 study published in the journal Basic & Clinical Pharmacology & Toxicology, three-quarters of people treated for drug addiction in Saudi Arabia are addicted to amphetamines, and almost all of those are Captagon users.

Seized drugs and Captagon pills at the Drug Enforcement Administration in Damascus, Syria.
Source LOUAI BESHARA/AFP/Getty
Sometimes used as an appetite suppressant, Captagon is also becoming increasingly popular in the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and North Africa. While a batch of 200 sells for about $70 in Lebanon, in wealthy Gulf states a single pill can fetch between $10 and $20.
It’s a business that only seems to be growing. From 2013-2014, the amount of Captagon seized on the Syria–Lebanon border doubled to almost 30 million pills. Today, a third of all Captagon seizures worldwide happen in the Middle East.
Inside Syria, Captagon is seen as a poor man’s drug. “Mostly it’s people who don’t have enough money to buy beer or hashish [who buy and use Captagon],” says Ziad, a resident of Damascus who’s familiar with the drug. “People who don’t have a job or can’t afford a house, people who have problems in their lives who are unhappy.”
Those exporting the drug for millions of dollars are far from unhappy though. And with ties between Assad’s regime and the West unlikely to improve anytime soon, expect Syria’s status as an emerging illegal pill purveyor to expand.
Stephen Starr,

 

Deep State Vows PAYBACK After Trump Disrupts Millions In Illegal Drug Trafficking Cash & Kickbacks from Syria

2 thoughts on “NARCO-POLITIK: Deep State Vows Payback After Trump Disrupts Millions In Illegal Drug Trafficking Cash & Kickbacks from Syria

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